Takuma Sato On:
- Pocono Raceway: “I always enjoy coming back to Pocono, simply the track is awesome and racing here is exciting one. I also enjoy the scenery of this region with its dense forest – it feels so good to be here.”
- What he likes about the track: “This track is great fun to drive, so I personally like Pocono a lot. We have been strong here from the first year so I think our philosophy works well and I really enjoy it. The sensation of speed going into the high-banked Turn 1 is very impressive. The balance of the car changing in Turn 2 and Turn 3 to being more neutral due to less and less banking makes it challenging, particularly Turn 3 is very challenging. The track just gives us a great overtaking opportunities too, so the race here is always exciting.”
- The Pocono test: “It was a good test. Unfortunately not a lot of running for us, but we collected very valuable data. We learned a lot about the aero as we will run with dome-skid safety device because it’s now the new standard for the super-speedway package.”
- Putting last year’s tragedy behind him: “It’s hard for us to accept, we lost our good friend. Having said that, it’s important to go forward and because of Justin, our safety’s been improved this year. IndyCar is putting a lot of commitment for our safety environment and the progress has been great. So we will race hard but we will always be thinking about him.”
- How he enjoyed his time off: “Spent another great time in Canada as same as last year…lots of fun activities. It was a fantastic time to spend together with my kids in nature and we couldn’t ask for any better weather too. It was just simply a stunning time so I’m totally refreshed.”
Jack Hawksworth On:
- Pocono Raceway: “”Looking forward to the race this weekend. Sometimes this one can be action-packed and sometimes it can be pretty strung out. Judging by last year, I expect it to be more of the former which should be good for the fans. With it being an ABC Supply-sponsored race it will be extra special for our team. Hopefully we have a good weekend and give them something to cheer about.”
- Third time the charm? Why he expects a better outcome at Pocono: “Last year we had good pace in the race but unfortunately we lost a rear wheel after the first pit stop and we were then several laps down. We were then cutting through the field well before Kimball turned in on me as I tried to unlap myself into Turn 1. If we can have that kind of race car again without the issues then I believe it will be a fine race for us.”
- The Pocono test: “Unfortunately we didn’t get to hit many of our test items during the day but we will try to recover the situation on Saturday and put ourselves in a position to go forward in the race. I think we have a relatively ok starting point but we will need to do a lot of work, especially in traffic.”
- How he enjoyed his time off: “I spent some time in Greece on island called Zante with some of my family and friends who live out there. It was a lot of fun, we spent most of our time at the beach and by the pool!”
A.J. Foyt will be at Pocono this year: Last year Foyt underwent surgery August 10 due to a staph infection in his right artificial knee. He missed the final two races of the season.
Past performance: In three races, Takuma Sato has qualified in the top-10 with his best start of fourth coming in 2014. His best finish of sixth came last year. Jack Hawksworth did not attempt to qualify for his first race here in 2014 because of an accident in practice in which he sustained a bruise to his heart muscle. Last year he started 14th but was eliminated after 82 laps due to contact with Charlie Kimball.
This season’s performance: Takuma Sato’s best start is 8th (Long Beach) and his best finish is a pair of fifths (Long Beach and Toronto). Hawksworth’s best start is fourth (Grand Prix of Indianapolis) and his best finish is 11th (St. Petersburg and Elkhart Lake).
ABC Supply Co. is in its 12th season as marketing partner of AJ Foyt Racing: ABC Supply began sponsoring the AJ Foyt Racing team with the 2005 Indianapolis 500, and is the second longest active team sponsor in the Verizon IndyCar Series. With this season, the company ties U.S. Tobacco’s Copenhagen brand in length of sponsorship of Foyt’s team. ABC Supply has leveraged its involvement by sponsoring races at Milwaukee (in the past) and now at Pocono Raceway with the ABC Supply 500, and by entertaining over 75,000 associates and customers during the past 11 racing seasons. For the second straight year at Pocono, over 1300 guests will be entertained this weekend.
ABC Supply roofing customer, Tortorice Contractors, Inc., located in Sewell, N.J., won the ‘Your Name Here’ contest for this weekend. The company name will be atop the sidepods of the No. 41 ABC Supply Honda. Guests will receive the VIP treatment plus a Meet and Greet with Jack Hawksworth.
Headquartered in Beloit, Wis., ABC Supply was founded by Ken and Diane Hendricks in 1982. The company operates over 600 branches in 49 states plus the District of Columbia and is dedicated exclusively to serving professional contractors. ABC Supply has distinguished itself by following a simple guiding principle – take care of contractors better than any other distributor. It remains an “employee-first” company that treats its associates with respect and gives them the tools they need to succeed. As a 10-time winner of the Gallup Great Workplace Award, which recognizes the best-performing workforces in the world, ABC Supply is one of only three companies in the world to have earned this honor every year since its inception in 2007. More information is available at www.abcsupply.com.
The ABC Supply 500 will be televised live Sunday, Aug. 21, starting at 3:00 p.m. ET on the NBC Sports Network.